Tuesday 27 October 2009


I finally figured it out. One of my favorite SILs gave me a coffee mug a couple of Christmasses ago, and on it was ''I only have a kitchen because it came with the house'' - she obviously has a pretty good handle on me. I don't cook.

I cook for the children, but fish fingers isn't real cooking. I might cook a proper meal once a month. I cooked my DH an English breakfast a couple of Sundays ago; he was still in bed, smelled the bacon etc. cooking, and thought it was the people next door having a cooked breakfast. It didn't occur to him at all that it was his breakfast, the poor deprived man.

I faced the Inquisition as to why ....was I trying to tell him something about the milkman's regular visits ? Had I broken something priceless ? Had I spent lots of money on something I shouldn't that we couldn't afford ? I don't drive, so he knew I hadn't crashed the car. It wasn't his birthday, Father's Day or our anniversary; he still views the whole event with deep suspicion. So much for being nice, huh.

Well, my fragrance oils arrived yesterday, and now I'm itching to make soap (qv: impatience); however, kids and caustic soda are a less than ideal combination, so it will have to wait. I also need some coconut oil - the price of which seems to have shot up in the last few months, but if I want good bubbles, I have to have it. While I was waiting, I was thinking, why don't I like to cook ? I like to make things - embroidery, patchwork, soap, knitting; I even do some things that might be considered nurturing, like gardening, houseplants, and tarot. Oh yes - and raising children. They all involve time, effort, and some degree of skill and/or talent. But, so does cooking. So why don't I like to cook ? It's creative, productive, tasty, and practical.

The thing is, cooking is transient. A couple of bites and it's gone. The ephemeral flow of tangs and flavors across the taste buds just has no longevity, even in memory. In this, cooking reminds me of housework (qv). When I make something, I want it to last a little while at least, not be gone in 60 seconds. Or less, when we're talking clean floors. Lucky for me I'm married to someone who originally trained and worked as a chef, and uses cooking as therapy to relax with - otherwise I'd either starve or OD on the additives in junk food - I'm eating one of his stuffed baked apples (a Bramley from my father's garden) right now; obviously, food cooked and washed up by someone else is always the best food, but I think it's the hint of triple sec that makes this particular culinary delight so extra-delicious.

So now I feel cleansed, even
righteous, having found a
philosophical and therefore profound and socially acceptable reason for not cooking that far surpasses my previous excuses of laziness, miniature badly lit kitchen, electric stove, lack of time, being a bad wife ....

Epiphanies are a Good Thing.

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